This year’s North Thompson Fall Fair in Barriere invited the talented ladies of Clearwater’s own North Thomson Ladies Drill Team to perform. Six horses with six lovely ladies got all dressed up with bling, and smart red and white polo wraps (leg wraps) to perform for an audience that cheered them on and enjoyed the show.
Riding a drill takes a lot of preparation and training. First of all the horses have to be trained in basic horsemanship – be able to trot, canter, make sharp turns, come back to balanced calm walk and then go for an outright gallop, all under control and at very precise moments.
The riders have to remember the exact pattern of the drill and be able to keep a correct distance from the other horses while still keeping in step with the others.
The role of the drillmaster is to help choreograph the combination of moves in order to show precision, energy and a lot of showmanship.
“In my case, I came in late in the game as the ladies had already created a drill pattern,” said drillmaster Aida Andersen. “So my major contribution has been to remind them all to smile and enjoy the ride, and boy did they smile today. They made Clearwater proud.”
The team members also showed their drill during the Clearwater Canoe Regatta on the afternoon of Sept. 8 at Mann’s Field across from Dutch Lake Beach.